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Lack of security protocols can cause PR nightmares

Everyone knows about the importance of changing passwords. This is particularly true for those operating businesses. Not every employee is going to leave under the best of terms, and they may intend to cause harm to the company regardless of their termination and severance agreements.

A public relations nightmare goes viral

According to a recent article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, a Missouri woman named Hermeisha Robinson applied for a customer service job at Mantality Health. She was shocked when she received a response Monday, August 13 from the company stating that they do not hire people with “ghetto” names. The email was signed Jordan Kimler, who is a nurse practitioner who works for the company. The company provides treatment for men with low testosterone and has locations in several Midwestern states.

Word spreads quickly

She was rightfully upset and posted a response on Facebook, which was shared more than 10,000 times. By Wednesday, August 15, a quick search of Mantilla Health reveals more 50,000 hits with media outlets across the country picking up the story. The company’s web site currently displays a disclaimer at the top of the home page regarding the incident.

Job board hacked?

The company has come to believe that the password of its third party job board at Indeed.com had been hacked. It is estimated that an estimated 20 applicants received similar emails to that of Robinson’s. Spokespersons at Indeed.com announced that the account security was not compromised on their end, which leads to the likely culprit being a disgruntled ex-employee.

The checklistLarge companies have security protocols in place, but this may not be the case for small to medium sized companies. Nonetheless, there should be a checklist of actions after an employee leaves. The list includes:

  • Eliminating employee’s access to email
  • Eliminating their access to the business’s social media accounts
  • Changing all other external passwords they had access to

Legal guidance can often provide solutions

The company was rightly apologetic about the offensive turn of events. An attorney experienced in employment law can help companies protect themselves from such nightmares. Instituting security and termination protocols is a start. Other services can be provided as well, including prosecution of the offending former employee.

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